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Do Life Insurance and Disability Insurance Policies cover COVID-19?


DOES DISABILITY INSURANCE COVER CORONAVIRUS?


If you’re applying for disability insurance, a global health crisis such as coronavirus can have consequences for your policy. But if you’re already covered, your policy will cover you the same as any other illness. You must satisfy your elimination period, typically 90 days and you must be unable to work due to a sickness or injury.


DOES LIFE INSURANCE COVER CORONAVIRUS?


If you’re applying for life insurance, a global health crisis such as coronavirus can have consequences for your policy. But if you’re already covered, your family will be paid out the death benefit in the event that you pass away from a pandemic illness.

  • Life insurance policies already in place likely won’t see any changes due to a pandemic such as Cornoavirus COVID-19.

  • People applying for life insurance policies during a pandemic should be upfront and disclose any history of any past or future travel plans, otherwise their policy may be rescinded and deemed invalid.

  • How each life insurance company will respond to life insurance applications during an event like the coronavirus outbreak varies across insurers and it’s best practice to shop around for a life insurance policy that accommodates your individual needs.

When a pandemic becomes world news, you may start to consider the necessity of purchasing a policy or wonder how news of an outbreak might shape the policy you already have.

A global health crisis like the widespread COVID-19 outbreak that began in late 2019 can make applying for life insurance more complicated. But as long as you have an active policy in place, if you were to die of a pandemic illness, your family would still receive the death benefit, even if you had knowingly traveled to areas with a known disease outbreak.

Essentially, life insurance covers pandemics, assuming you were truthful about your travel plans and exposure to illness during the application process.

Life and disability policies have a 2 year period of incontestability. This means if you have a claim in the first 2 years of the policy, they have the right to investigate to see if you honestly disclosed everything on your application, including foreign travel. Once your policy is in force for 2 years, they cannot reopen your underwriting file.

If you do NOT disclose in your application that you are traveling to a place that is deemed dangerous and have a claim as a result in the first 2 years, the company has the right to investigate the claim and possibly rescind the contract.


WHAT IS A PANDEMIC?


According to the World Health Organization, a pandemic is the global spread of a newly introduced disease, while an epidemic is when a disease is constrained to one region.

Pandemics of the past, such as the 1918 Spanish flu, have been famously deadly. But thanks to modern medicine and proper intervention, there are now many more tools for tracking and preventing pandemics. Regardless, pandemics tend to cause some uncertainty and it’s important to think about setting up a financial plan like life insurance.


HOW LIFE INSURANCE COMPANIES TREAT PANDEMICS


When you apply for a new life or disability insurance policy, you must disclose medical history, dangerous avocations and history of travel in the previous 3 years and future travel. These can be determining factors as to how they will price your policy.=

Life insurance will sometimes increase your rates if you are traveling to a high risk country. Life insurance cannot exclude travel to countries but they will add extra premium.

Disability insurance does not typically add additional premium for foreign travel, but sometimes will add an exclusion on the policy. Consult with your broker as it may make sense to wait until you return to apply for coverage.


ACTIVE LIFE AND DISABILITY INSURANCE POLICIES


If you already have a life or disability insurance policy and you pay your premiums, there’s no reason to sound the alarm. Whether you’re traveling to a highly compromised area or a pandemic has hit home, life and disability  insurance companies can’t change the health classification or rates you pay on a policy that is already in force.

Likewise, if you die from a pandemic disease or travel to a country with a CDC COVID-19 travel alert, life insurance companies can’t deny your family the death benefit. Disability policies will also pay you benefits if the virus precludes you from working past your elimination period, typically 90 days.


For more information about Life Insurance and/or Disability Insurance call JCT Insurance Agency at (626)354-2000 or email jctfinancialsvc@gmail.com

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